Patriots keeping busy this summer

Joe Range of New Athens bats for the Patriots
during the team’s 13-inning win over the
St. Louis Prospects.

The Valmeyer Patriots independent baseball team is 6-5 on the season after playing recent games and a tournament as part of the summer Missouri COVID League.

The team – which features players from Valmeyer, Waterloo, Gibault and New Athens high schools and was formed after the American Legion season was canceled due to COVID-19 – won two games last week.

Last Wednesday, the Patriots traveled to St. Peters, Mo., notching an 11-1 victory. A four-run second inning put the visitors up early. 

Nate Albrecht led off with a walk and reached third on a stolen base and ground out. Drake Downing’s ground out produced the first run of the game. George Schneider was hit by a pitch and Sam Fitzwilliam’s hit loaded the bases. Kyle Ronat singled to drive in two runs and Aidan Karsten added an RBI hit.

With two outs in the fourth inning, Albrecht doubled to left, Joe Range walked and Downing, Schneider, Fitzwilliam and Ronat all followed with RBI hits.

Tim Reinholz had two doubles and an RBI. Downing and Ronat each went 2-for-3 with three RBIs. 

On Saturday, the Patriots downed Union, Mo., 6-2.

Jacob Rowold walked to open the game, stole second and third and came home on Reinholz’s hit. 

The Patriots added two runs in the third inning. Albrecht tripled to left and scored on a ground ball by Reinholz when the throw to the plate was late. Reinholz scored on Range’s double.

Albrecht and Range each had a double and triple. 

Downing picked up the win with three innings of no-hit ball and three strikeouts.

The Patriots competed in a tournament June 13-14 at Washington, Mo., going 2-2.

Riley McCarthy, Philip Reinhardt, Albrecht, Reinholz, Downing, Fitzwilliam and Karsten turned in solid tourney efforts.

The Patriots opened pool play against Washington, who scored four first-inning runs en route to a 10-1 win. 

The Patriots faced Sullivan in the second pool game, winning 6-2. 

Downing went 1-for-3 with three RBIs. McCarthy  and Fitzwilliam each went 2-for-4. 

Reinholz started and pitched three innings, allowing two runs and striking out eight. Reinhardt pitched the final four innings for the win, striking out eight and allowing just two hits.

In the quarterfinals, the Patriots won a 13-inning battle with the St. Louis Prospects.

Range started and threw six innings, allowing three runs and striking out five. i

Isaac Dixon took over the mound for the Prospects in the fifth inning and Albrecht relieved Range in the seventh. No runs scored through the 12th inning. 

In the bottom of the 12th, the Prospects opened with a double and an error to put the winning run on third with no outs. The bases were loaded following walks, but Albrecht escaped the jam by striking out three in a row. 

Albrecht struck out 14 in his seven innings pitched, picking up the win when the Patriots broke loose in the 13th on his RBI hit and another from McCarthy.

The Patriots battled Alton in the semifinals, falling 3-0. The game was scoreless through four innings as Gibson Sippel took a no-hitter into the fifth before Alton got to him with all of their runs in that frame.

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Corey Saathoff

Corey is the editor of the Republic-Times. He has worked at the newspaper since 2004, and currently resides in Columbia. He is also the principal singer-songwriter and plays guitar in St. Louis area country-rock band The Trophy Mules.
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